The theme for Organic Fortnight this year is Choosing Organic Every Day. According to the Organic Trade Board, 68% of people polled said that they would buy more organic produce if it were cheaper. Interestingly though the board has produced information that shows that organic staples can be cheaper than the non-organic alternative -so for the staples at least you can choose organic every day without it costing too much.
Some organic products are more expensive just because of the cost of organic inputs such as feed and the costs of certification, inspection and more labour intensive processes. This premium passes to the farmer and guarantees:
* that your food is free from pesticide residues or other unpleasant chemical additives
* that any animal involved in production has lived a good life to high animal welfare standards and
* you are likely to be supporting small scale agriculture rather than an impersonal industrial conglomerate (though this can't be guaranteed these days as industrial conglomerates are seeing the potential in organics).
Some small scale local producers find the costs of certification to be too much. Some of these producers may produce food to organic standards without the certificate to prove it. If you live near one of these producers it is worth checking them out and getting to know them. If you can learn about your organic farm on first hand terms and can see their standards for yourself, perhaps the certificate isn't so important?
If you focus on buying fresh organic fruit and vegetables and minimise the amount of meat or ready meals you buy then you will find it doesn't cost so much. Another thing to think about is that the more people who buy organic, the cheaper it will become, just due to market forces.
Excellent article on Organic Foodee - Why is Organic Food more expensive?
For Organic Fortnight
To find out what's happening in Scotland during Organic Fortnight, visit this page.
Posts from other participating bloggers:
You can have a look behind the scenes of the campaign on the Information Officer's Support Blog here.
Caroline Gill talks about the Eden Project and organic chocolate here.
Gabrielle Bryden makes the connection between pesticides and autism here and shares a light hearted look at organic free range emus here.